Lessons From the Apple/Jobs Controversy

Apple has always prided itself on “thinking different.” While scores of companies are working to rebuild obliterated consumer trust in the wake of the financial crisis, Apple has gone against the grain, stirring up a contentious debate with silence and secrecy regarding CEO Steve Jobs’ recent liver transplant. The news contradicts prior public statements from Apple about Jobs’ health, which cryptically focused on a “nutritional ailment,” thus fueling debates on what exactly the company is obligated to disclose to its shareholders and other core constituents. The timing of the liver transplant news is especially awkward: It coincided with the unveiling of the new iPhone 3GS and Jobs’ public comments about record sales and “winning,” all while he remained tight-lipped on the state of his own health. There are numerous lessons communications executives can extract from the recent Apple controversy: â–¶ “No comment” launches a company out of the driver’s seat: While Jobs has a reputation as a hyper-controlling leader, he and Apple have lost all control of the story surrounding his health and ability to lead Apple into a prosperous future.

Subscribe Now  |  Login

Comments Off

Deals of the Week

Get $150 Off PR News' Measurement Conference 

Media Relations ConferenceJoin PR News at the National Press Club on Dec. 11 for the Media Relations Conference, where you'll learn how to tie your media relations initiatives to business goals, use the right metrics to prove the success of your efforts, incorporate social media in a brand crisis and more.

Use code “150” at checkout to save $150 on the regular rate.

Get $50 off PR News' Crisis Management Guidebook


Crisis management is an art, not a science. In this edition of PR News’ Book of Crisis Management Strategies & Tactics, you will discover many different views on this art, and you are certain to find takeaways that will transform the way your organization handles crises. 

Use code “50off” at checkout.

Save $100 on a PR News Subscription



Let PR News become your weekly, go-to resource for the latest PR trends, case studies and tip sheets. Topics covered include visual storytelling, social media, measurement, crisis management and media relations.

Use code “SUBDEAL” at checkout.

Comments are closed.